Prince Charles reminded Queen Mother of her ‘insecure’ King George VI

Secrets of Charles’ love for the Queen Mother: Prince reminded his grandmother of her ‘insecure’ husband George VI, historians claim – while he had ‘no real bond’ with the Queen

  • New documentary dives into Queen Mother’s relationship with Prince Charles 
  • Show claims she thought Charles needed same help as ‘insecure’ King George VI
  • Charles did not receive ‘softness’ or ‘warmth’ from his parents, historians claim
  • Royal biographer Penny Junor says Queen’s focus was on her job  

Prince Charles’ bond with his grandmother is well documented, but now a new programme has shed further light on just why they were so close. 

A Channel 5 documentary claims that the Queen Mother saw in young Prince of Wales the same insecurities she’d observed in her late husband King George VI.  

In the documentary, historian Hugo Vickers, who wrote extensively on the late royal’s life, says: ‘I think the Queen Mother saw in Prince Charles somebody that needed the same sort of support she had given George VI.’

He explained that the Queen mother saw similarities between Charles and her husband who was ‘a man who was probably rather insecure in some way, especially when he was little, and possibly even a bit lost’.

In the documentary, royal biographer Penny Junor describes Queen Elizabeth II as ‘a standoffish mother’ with her heart focused on the monarchy, saying: ‘There wasn’t a real mother-son bond.’

The Queen Mother had a well-known fondness for her grandson Charles (pictured together on her 101st birthday at Clarence House in 2001 with William and Harry), and it was all down to his similarities with his grandfather George VI, a new documentary claims

The Duke of York pictured with his wife in 1935, a year before he became King George VI

‘Her focus was on the Monarchy, on doing the job.’ Junor claims. 

Historian Robert Lacey also claims: ‘Prince Charles obviously found with the Queen Mother the softness that he didn’t get from either his own mother or Prince Philip.

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‘And we know from his own authorised biography he found his mother and his parenting “distant”.

‘I think he got from his grandmother the warmth that his parents never gave him.’ 

Childhood days: A young Prince Charles with the Queen Mother and her dog, Pippin 

Vickers adds that while courtiers would say the Queen Mother had respect for the important position Charles would one day hold, their relationship was base don ‘much more than that’. 

‘It was a sort of natural friendship across generations,’ he says. 

In his own official biography, which was published in 1997, Charles, now 70, said he found his parents ‘remote.’  

He recalled a childhood during which the nursery staff, not his ’emotionally reserved’ parents, were the people who ‘taught him to play, witnessed his first steps, punished and rewarded him, helped him put his first thoughts into words’.

Charles has spoken openly of his affection for his ‘magical’ grandmother, with who he once said he enjoyed his closest family relationship. 

The documentary also reveals that the Queen Mother was the one who handled ‘overexcited’ Prince Charles and Princess Anne, then five and three, on their mother’s televised coronation. 

The Royal Family photographed in August 1951. Left to right: Charles, his grandmother, Princess Margaret, Prince Philip, Kind George VI and the then Princess Elizabeth  with Princess Anne

It was Prince Philip who had the idea of broadcasting the historical event, which took place on 2 June 1953 and was watched by 27 million people. 

Netflix documentary House of Windsor also revealed that the Queen Mother was protective of Charles and resented Philip. 

‘She thought he bullied his son and failed to appreciate how sensitive he was,’ says the narrator. 

The Channel 5 documentary, which airs this Saturday, also dives deeper into the Queen mother’s tumultuous relationship with her son-in-law.  

An insider reveals that the Queen’s mother ‘never got along’ with the Duke of Edinburgh, now 97, as the two battled over his decision to install telephones in Buckingham Palace. 

The Prince of Wales keeping a look out on his fourth birthday, as he leans from a window from Buckingham Palace with his mother, Queen Elizabeth II on 14 November 1952. The Prince of Wales described his mother as ‘remote’ in his 1994 authorised biography

Philip apparently clashed with his mother-in-law in the 1950s after he removed the footmen who used to take messages from one royal to another. 

The Queen Mother disliked Prince Philip’s attitude towards technology and stuck with her traditional values, another insider reveals. 

Princess Margaret also had a complex relationship with her mother. 

It is believed that Queen Elizabeth’s only sister, who passed in 2002, never forgave the Queen Mother for keeping her from marrying army veteran and dashing divorcee Peter Townsend. 

Yet, the Countess of Snowdon lived with her mother at Clarence House.

The documentary claims that the Queen Mother ‘conspired with powers that be’ in order to keep the pair apart, as she was still haunted by King Edward’s abdication.   

The Queen Mother: The Lost Year airs at 9:30pm on Saturday 16th March on Channel 5. 


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